I genuinely don’t know how the past few months have simply flown by. I have been here, there and everywhere - and yet, no where! does that make any sense?
Strange, but i have grown even more listless than usual! My mind is constantly distracted by a myriad of conflicting thoughts.
I sit here gingerly trying to make friends with the keyboard once again and reclaim a hobby, i enjoyed so much - writing on this blog. This little space of mine in the crazyclustered virtual world, has previously given me much happiness and contentment. And I am sure this and the next few blog entries might appear a bit shaky, but i resolve to steer it back on course!!
So, I just got back from Doha....a city which is still more dust than development. A city of the future lets say, and a truly dazzling future at that! This trip makes it my third visit in the past year and a half, and I have in inkling that there will be several more to come.
I find the G.C.C a truly interesting zone; as it holds much allure to me. Similar to my feelings towards the former U.S.S.R - Ukraine (I went to Kiev last winter) and Russia (Can’t wait to visit the land of Faberge and Putin).
The local Emirati has a life completely and utterly unknown to anyone who is a non-Arab. it it a world shrouded in mystery and moolah! Whenever I am in a mall, I am riveted at the sight of all the “floating people” - elegant ladies in their beautifully fashioned abayaas with stunning kohl-lined eyes and strongly defined eyebrows, with a shimmering clothing perching strategically off their coiffed hair. And the rugged men in their whiter-than-white, crisp dish-dashes and head gear, with the neatest shaves, their eyes wildly dancing about at everything around them. In these long robed outfits, they glide through the malls, fulfilling their daily cardio requirements, leaving the insignificant others standing, in a cloud of their heavy attar trail....
I find them all beautiful creatures - almost mystical. I wonder what goes on behind the private confines of their homes and hearts. They are not like us, that is for sure. But how different can they be, is what i am interested in.
The mood in Doha is moderate; set at an ideological mid-point between decadent Dubai and severe Saudi. The tiny population of 250,000 people enjoy the safety of their country, from the plush confines of their souped-up Bentleys, Maybachs and Rolls-Royces. Business seems to have moved from pearl-fishing to real-estate. Sitting on top of a huge oil resource, the rich locals have a lazy life dedicated to travel and prayer. Presently, the city boasts little in terms of entertainment avenues. There is a cute little souk area in the old town, a noteworthy museum of Islamic art, the high-end Pearl project and so on....And as for all the thirsty expats that have now made Doha their home, all roads lead to the W Hotel or to La Cigalle, to quench that thirst. The lobby of the W hotel was crawling through out the 3 days that I was there. Wahm! and Crystal were thronging with gyrating people, enjoying the house-beats till the wee hours of the morning.
I went for a peak-a-boo with darling Clement, who was there on work as well. we enjoyed a few silly moments like the one below:
Doha has a mammoth jewelry exhibition every year, which is now in its 10th edition. It is mammoth not in terms of the size of the exhibition; but with the sheer inventory up for sale.
With the oldest and finest jewelers and watch-makers present there, to try and sell their most rare and coveted baubles. It is said that just the immediate Royal Family (Al Thani family), allocates a $20 million budget towards this exhibition alone.
WOW or WHAT?!
As I went on a 2-day mystery shopping adventure, I had great fun being entertained by most of the booth owners, who thought me to be in the market for some thing big, beautiful and expensive. Although generally, all their attention was focussed on the more realistic business opportunities provided by the Sheikhas!
This time, i got to see some truly incredible things - particularly at JAHAAN, Cartier and at the Christies Private Sales salon. I saw the most incredible collection of emerald beads - so beautiful - that one could be fooled that they were glass marbles! I also saw the modern-day version of the Maharaja of Patiala bib - undoubtedly one of the greatest jewels every created!
I leave you with this beautiful image and a long, long sighhhhhhhhh.................